Let's stop the sainthood for Roy Halladay campaign

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The guys behind the most excellent Blue Jays blog Drunk Jays Fans love them some Roy Halladay, but they’ve had a bit too much of the post-trade Halladay-love.  After first acknowledging that Halladay was the best pitcher to ever wear the bird, they let loose:

What I don’t understand is the sentiment that seems to exist amongst
Jays fans that Halladay did us some sort of favour by pitching here.
Again, he was excellent, and that should be celebrated, but during his
entire time in Toronto he was paid very close to market value and given
every possible perk that he desired.

The fact that he signed
more than one extension to stay in Toronto doesn’t mean he was
sacrificing anything. He took those deals because it was the devil he
knew: the media he didn’t have to answer questions from, the players
who revered him and the comfort that comes from the familiar.

That doesn’t make him any less of a competitor, but it also doesn’t make him a saint.

I guess they didn’t see his thank you letter in the Sun . . .

Brandon McCarthy wins final spot in Dodgers’ rotation

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We learned on Monday that Hyun-Jin Ryu won one of the final two spots in the Dodgers’ starting rotation. Brandon McCarthy has won the other, Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register reports. Alex Wood was McCarthy’s competitor for the spot.

McCarthy, 33, posted a 4.85 ERA across four appearances spanning 13 innings this spring, yielding seven earned runs on 14 hits and a walk with seven strikeouts. Wood, a southpaw, gave up five earned runs in six innings against the Reds on Tuesday, which might have factored into the decision.

Last season, McCarthy made nine starts and one relief appearance, posting a 4.95 ERA with a 44/26 K/BB ratio in 40 innings. In the event McCarthy falters, the club has Wood as well as Julio Urias and the injured Scott Kazmir as potential replacements.

Yankees re-sign Jon Niese to a minor league deal

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The Yankees have re-signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, George A. King III of the New York Post reports. Niese was released on Sunday, but he’ll stick around and provide rotation depth for the Yankees.

Niese had knee surgery last August and got a late start to spring training as a result. In six spring appearances lasting an inning each, the lefty gave up three earned runs on five hits and a walk with five strikeouts.

Niese, a veteran of nine seasons, put up an aggregate 5.50 ERA with an 88/47 K/BB ratio in 121 innings last season between the Pirates and Mets.